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Jenny Knauss Collection

Identifier: MS93

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents

The Jenny Knauss Collection primarily consists of Knauss's personal files of Chicago Women's Liberation Union activities from 1971-1978. Included are calendars, conference agendas and reports, position papers, committee reports, and topical files of articles, class papers, clippings, and brochures on various women's issues, including the equal rights amendment, media, psychology, labor and economics, education, and theater. Many files contain Knauss's notes. Proposals and course materials for the CWLU's Liberation School for Women are included, as well as several course catalogs. Knauss organized extensive files on the Chicago Women's Health Movement and wrote a history of it.

Besides her drafts of this and other articles, there are files on several Chicago women's health centers and Cook County Hospital, the Bilingual Health project, the Chicago Women's Health Task Force, and other feminist health concerns in Chicago. The collection contains extensive files related to birth control and abortion, including material from JANE, the abortion counseling service organized by the CWLU. Knauss and others wrote a history of JANE entitled "A View from the Loop".

Other women's liberation materials include positions statements, flyers, pamphlets, etc. from various individuals and groups such as Cell 16, New University Conference Women's Caucus, and S.P.A.Z.M.


  • 1971-1978


Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on use of the materials in the department for research; all patrons must comply with federal copyright regulations. Copyright for materials resides with the literary executors of individual materials.


9.00 Boxes


Jenny Knauss, a member of the Chicago Women’s Liberation Union, worked primarily on women’s education, health issues and day care. She also served as the director of the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health for two decades, from 1983-2002. The Knauss Collection consists of her personal topical files related to the Chicago Women's Liberation Union and feminist health issues, primarily in Chicago, between 1971 and 1978. Knauss wrote a history on the Chicago Women's Health Movement and collaborated with others on a history of the abortion service, Jane, entitled "A View from the Loop".


The Jenny Knauss Collection is organized into sub-series for each named organization (Chicago Women's Liberation Union, Liberation School for WSomen, Chicago Women's Health Movement). These sub-series for organizations are interspersed among sub-series of: alphabetically-arranged topical files; women's health care and abortion; women's liberation materials; miscellaneous reprints on various topics; and serials and pamphlets.

Acquisition Information

Jenny Knauss donated her personal files of the Chicago Women's Liberation Union and feminist health-related materials to the McCormick Library in 1986.

Related Materials

Material in the Knauss Collection can be supplemented from the McCormick Library's extensive feminist book and periodical holdings, as well as with material from the topical W.E.F. ephemeral files.

For related material in the McCormick Library, consult the following collections: Paula Kamen Collection (Series CXXV), the Papers of the Chicago Commission on Women's Affairs (Series CXXVI), the Papers of the Clergy Consultation Service (Series CXXVIII), and the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health Collection (Series CXXXVIII).

Separated Materials

Issues of the CWLU newsletter have been added to the McCormick Library Femina serial collection. All other catalogued items included in the following separation list can be found in the McCormick Library and in the Northwestern University online catalog.

Pamphlets and Serials removed and cataloged:

Joyce Cowley. Pioneers of Women Liberation. New York, 1969.

Judy Edelman. Women on the Job: A Marxist-Leninist View. New York, 1970.

It Ain't Me Babe. Berkeley, CA. 1970.

Joan Jordan. The Place of American Women--Economic Exploitation of Women. Boston, n.d.

V.I. Lenin. Soviet Power and the Status of Women and International Women's Day. Moscow, 1954.

Kathy McAfee and Myrna Wood. Bread and Roses. Detroit, n.d.

Lyn Wells. American Women: Their Use and Abuse. Boston, n.d.

Newsletter of the Radical Historians' Caucus. Boston. no. 4, 1970.

New American Movement. Minneapolis. no. 8. July-Sept., 1974.

National Women's Health Network News. Washington. n.n. August, 1970.

East Bay Women's Liberation Newsletter. n.d. Oct., 1969.

Processing Information

Organized and processed by Sigrid Pohl Perry in 1987 and revised in 1997.

Guide to the Jenny Knauss Collection
Finding Aid Authors: Sigrid Pohl Perry.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
The collection description/finding aid is written in English

Library Details

Part of the Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections Repository

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US